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André Roca, Paul R. Ford, Allistair P. McRobert and A. Mark Williams

The ability to anticipate and to make decisions is crucial to skilled performance in many sports. We examined the role of and interaction between the different perceptual-cognitive skills underlying anticipation and decision making. Skilled and less skilled players interacted as defenders with life-size film sequences of 11 versus 11 soccer situations. Participants were presented with task conditions in which the ball was located in the offensive or defensive half of the pitch (far vs. near conditions). Participants’ eye movements and verbal reports of thinking were recorded across two experiments. Skilled players reported more accurate anticipation and decision making than less skilled players, with their superior performance being underpinned by differences in task-specific search behaviors and thought processes. The perceptual-cognitive skills underpinning superior anticipation and decision making were shown to differ in importance across the two task constraints. Findings have significant implications for those interested in capturing and enhancing perceptual-cognitive skill in sport and other domains.

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A. Mark Williams and K. Anders Ericsson

In this themed issue of the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, we bring together an eclectic mix of papers focusing on how expert performers learn the skills needed to compete at the highest level in sport. In the preface, we highlight the value of adopting the expert performance approach as a systematic framework for the evaluation and development of expertise and expert performance in sport. We then place each of the empirical papers published in this issue into context and briefly outline their unique contributions to knowledge in this area. Finally, we highlight several potential avenues for future research in the hope of encouraging others to scientifically study how experts acquire the mechanisms mediating superior performance in sport and how coaches can draw on this knowledge to guide their athletes toward the most effective training activities.

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Paul G. Schempp and Sophie Woorons

professional soccer . Perceptual & Motor Skills, 124 ( 1 ), 264 – 276 . doi:10.1177/0031512516678727 10.1177/0031512516678727 Ericsson , K.A. ( 2006 ). An introduction to Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance: It’s development, organization and content . In K. Ericsson , N

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Adam Beavan, Vincent Chin, Louise M. Ryan, Jan Spielmann, Jan Mayer, Sabrina Skorski, Tim Meyer and Job Fransen

response to criticisms . Intelligence, 45 (1), 81 – 103 . doi: 10.1016/j.intell.2013.12.001 Ericsson , K.A. , Hoffman , R.R. , & Kozbelt , A. ( 2018 ). The Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance . Cambridge, UK : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/9781316480748 Faubert , J

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Phillip Ward, Yaohui He, Xiaozan Wang and Weidong Li

Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance (pp. 683 – 703 ). New York, NY : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/CBO9780511816796.038 Griffin , L.L. , & Butler , J. ( 2005 ). Teaching games for understanding: Theory, research, and practice . Champaign, IL : Human Kinetics . Hastie

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Emi Tsuda, Phillip Ward, Yilin Li, Kelsey Higginson, Kyuil Cho, Yaohui He and Jianzhen Su

. In K.A. Ericsson , N. Charness , P.J. Feltovich , & R.R. Hoffman (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance (pp.  683 – 703 ). New York, NY : Cambridge University Press . doi:10.1017/CBO9780511816796.038 10.1017/CBO9780511816796.038 Field , A. ( 2013

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Edson Filho

.M. (Eds.). ( 2018 ). The Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance . Cambridge : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/9781316480748 Filho , E. ( 2019 ). Team dynamics theory: Nomological network among cohesion, team mental models, coordination, and collective efficacy . Sport Sciences

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Jarred Pilgrim, Peter Kremer and Sam Robertson

expertise: The role of self-regulatory processes and beliefs . In A. Ericsson , N. Charness , P. Feltovich , & R. Hoffman (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance (pp.  705 – 722 ). New York, NY : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/CBO9780511816796.039 Zimmerman

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Line D. Danielsen, Rune Giske, Derek M. Peters and Rune Høigaard

and expert performance (pp.  439 – 453 ). New York, NY : Cambridge University Press . doi:10.1017/CBO9780511816796.025 10.1017/CBO9780511816796.025 Salas , E. , Sims , D.E. , & Burke , C.S. ( 2005 ). Is there a “big five” in teamwork? Small Group Research, 36 ( 5 ), 555 – 599 . doi:10

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Edward K. Coughlan, A. Mark Williams and Paul R. Ford

experience and deliberate practice on the development of superior expert performance . In K.A. Ericsson , N. Charness , P. Feltovich , & R.R. Hoffman (Eds.), Cambridge handbook of expertise and expert performance (pp.  683 – 703 ). Cambridge, UK : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/CBO